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Green liquor dregs-amended till to cover sulfidic mine waste
Luleå University of Technology, Department of Civil, Environmental and Natural Resources Engineering, Geosciences and Environmental Engineering.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-1367-7080
2018 (English)Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)Alternative title
Tillsatts av grönlutslam i morän för täckning av sulfidhaltigt gruvavfall (Swedish)
Abstract [en]

The mining industry produces massive amounts of waste that without treatment and in contact with oxygen can result in acid rock drainage (ARD) and increased leaching of metals. In Sweden, the common way to manage the mine waste after closure is to apply a dry coverage on top of the waste deposition. The access to a suitable cover-material is however limited and can lead to extensive costs for the mining company. This creates a great driving force for alternative solutions, e.g. bentonite amendment to till. However, bentonite production is costly both economically and environmentally due to time- and resource- consuming production. Recycling of industrial residues as a cover material is another option. The recycling is beneficial for many parts, i.e. the industry producing the residue, the mining industry that will use the residue and the society in its strive for zero waste. An industrial residue that has potential to improve the sealing layer qualities of a local till is Green Liquor Dregs (GLD), a residue from pulp production in a paper mill. In this study 5 to 20 wt. % of GLD from two different paper mills, with varying total solid content (TSC) and particle size distributions (PSD), were mixed with three tills also with varying PSD and TSC. The objectives of the study were to investigate if GLD addition can improve a till so it can be used in a sealing layer, how the fines- and clay content in the tills affects the hydraulic conductivity (HC) and the water retention capacity (WRC) of the till-GLD mixtures, and how the initial water content will affect the HC in the different mixtures. The HC of the mixtures based most of the tills studied improved, but not enough to reach the required 10-8 m/s. Only the material based on a more clayey silty till had an HC below 10-8 m/s, even if it increased with the addition of GLD. The WRC, on the other hand, shows promising results, especially for 15 wt. % GLD addition. An increase in WRC is seen the more GLD is added. However, due to compaction difficulties more than 20 wt. % addition is not recommended. There is a difference in both HC and WRC between the mixtures based on the different tills, and a characterization of the till as a bulk material and its mixture with GLD is suggested before using it in mine remediation purposes. The HC of the till is affected by the content of fines and especially clay. The results from the WRC is more complicated and a mineralogical study on the GLD and the clay fraction of the tills is recommended. This study also shows that the initial water content of the materials rather than dry density has an impact on the HC of the mixtures. The initial water content determines the degree wet of optimum that in this and previous studies has shown to greatly affect the HC. A drier till and GLD leads to that more GLD should be added to the mixture when reaching for optimal HC. Even if the study did not result in low enough HC in most of the cases, the WRC shows promising results and is the most important parameter minimizing the oxygen diffusion to the mine waste. The greatest challenge when working with GLD is, however, its heterogeneity which makes it difficult to predict how it will behave in a sealing layer. Even though, the recycling of GLD in mine waste remediation should be strived for as it is beneficial for both the industry that provides the residue and the mining company. It is also a great profit for the environment as it minimizes the waste disposed and reduce use of natural resources.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Luleå: Luleå University of Technology, 2018.
Series
Licentiate thesis / Luleå University of Technology, ISSN 1402-1757
National Category
Geotechnical Engineering Environmental Sciences Geochemistry
Research subject
Applied Geochemistry
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:ltu:diva-68654ISBN: 978-91-7790-144-0 (print)ISBN: 978-91-7790-145-7 (electronic)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:ltu-68654DiVA, id: diva2:1204180
Presentation
2018-09-06, E632, Luleå University of Technology, Luleå, 10:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2018-05-07 Created: 2018-05-07 Last updated: 2018-10-29Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Opportunities to use Green Liquor Dregs as an amendment in till to cover sulfidic mine waste.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Opportunities to use Green Liquor Dregs as an amendment in till to cover sulfidic mine waste.
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
National Category
Geotechnical Engineering
Research subject
Applied Geology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:ltu:diva-68652 (URN)
Available from: 2018-05-07 Created: 2018-05-07 Last updated: 2018-05-07
2. The drivers of hydraulic conductivity in till-GLD mixtures to be used in a sealing layer on top of mine waste.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The drivers of hydraulic conductivity in till-GLD mixtures to be used in a sealing layer on top of mine waste.
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
National Category
Geotechnical Engineering
Research subject
Applied Geology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:ltu:diva-68653 (URN)
Available from: 2018-05-07 Created: 2018-05-07 Last updated: 2018-05-07

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Nigéus, Susanne

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